Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
Cotswold Eagle

Enchantment 5-17 December 2011, Southern Caribbean - review with pictures

Recommended Posts

Introduction and pre-cruise

 

Welcome to a somewhat belated report of my 12-night Southern Caribbean cruise on the Enchantment of the Seas, which departed from Baltimore on 5 December 2011. By way of introduction, I am David from the UK, and I was travelling alone on my seventh RCI cruise (I am an Emerald member of the Crown and Anchor Society). Most recently I was on the Grandeur's transatlantic in the spring - you may read my review of that sailing here, to see if you want to bother with this one, although I hope to incorporate photos this time around - http://cruiseforums.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1411582

 

I was in an outside view cabin, #2654, on this sold-out cruise. I was curious to see how a completely full Enchantment would compare with my experience of a half-full Grandeur on a similar length sailing, and especially to compare this 'stretched' Vision class ship with her smaller sister. There had been a very busy Cruise Critic roll call for this cruise, started the day after some folk got back from the equivalent sailing last year, so I was looking forward to meeting some of those folk too. I will go day-by-day with observations and thoughts mostly written on board.

 

I flew BA direct from London Heathrow to Baltimore two days before the cruise and stayed near BWI, at the Country Inn and Suites, Linthicum. I got a good rate and I was very happy with my stay. They had an efficient and friendly shuttle, which picked me up from the airport on Saturday evening. One thing to note, the hotel is not on the courtesy phone board at BWI, but fortunately I had their number and a cell phone to call for pickup. I had a very comfortable king bed studio. The hotel offers a complimentary breakfast (which was adequate), coffee and cookies in the lobby, and free WiFi throughout. There is a Chili's restaurant next door (literally across the parking lot), and a Starbucks, small convenience store and food court about 200 yards up the road. Comfort Suites, a Marriott (which has a Champions sports bar) and La Quinta hotels are all in the same immediate area.

 

I had plans to go into Washington on Sunday. The hotel is close to the BWI Amtrak/MARC rail station and their shuttle drops/picks up there too. However, through the roll call for my cruise, I met up with a kind couple from Canada, Linda and Brian (aka CruisingFamily), who had hired a car and gave me a ride to Greenbelt Metro Station, where parking is free at weekends. A one day Metro pass was just $9 and we quickly got a train downtown. I headed out to Morgan Boulevard on the Metro later to get to FedEx field as I had a ticket for the Redskins game (they lost to three 4th quarter touchdowns from the Jets :)), and met my new friends at Union Station for the return journey to the hotel later in the afternoon.

 

So everything worked very well, and I would happily stay at the Country Inn & Suites again if sailing (or, indeed, flying) out of Baltimore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Contrary to what I had read elsewhere, the Country Inn and Suites does run a shuttle to the port, for which they charged $10 per person. On the day of our departure they ran one at 10.30 and one at noon. I took the 10.30, and we were at the port no more 15 or 20 minutes later.

 

This was my first time at Baltimore and I was impressed. Porters were waiting to load our luggage onto a train of luggage carts right by the drop off, and it was then a short walk to the large, permanent departure terminal. After filling out the usual medical form, I went to the clearly marked priority boarding line - a line which consisted of me - and I was directed to the next available agent. The formalities were completed just after 11, but boarding was not due to start until 11.30. There was a large seating area (with separate priority area), with a drinks station and cookies, to get us in the cruising mood. In the event, we boarded about 11.40. Boarding at Baltimore is up quite a long, but gentle, zig-zag covered ramp, taking us to Deck 4. It appeared that boarding down at dock level was available for those who would find the climb too much.

 

A view of the Baltimore cruise terminal from Deck 5

CruiseDec11dump002.jpg

 

As is customary, I quickly checked out some of the ship and inspected for seaworthiness the joins where the new section had been inserted some years ago (well, you can't be too careful :)). My first impressions were of a lovely ship with a familiar layout, but a much improved pool deck. I then headed to the Windjammer for lunch. As I had been one of the first to board, it was reasonably quiet, but quickly filled up.

 

Rooms were available shortly before the advertised time of 1.30 and my luggage arrived sometime in the afternoon (it's possible I was taking a nap) and I later met my cabin steward, Zaldy. My Emerald 'amenity' (orange juice, and basket containing some cookies, trail mix etc.) was in my cabin, along with excursion tickets, an invite to the Meet and Mingle the next day and my discount coupon booklet. I was asked to sign to say I had received the booklet, which I don't recall happening before - has there been an outbreak of coupon fraud in these difficult economic times?!

 

I headed on deck as Enchantment eased away from the dock and began heading out into the Chesapeake, enjoying the views of Baltimore and Fort McHenry. Without wanting to be rude to my American audience, or to the third person who tried to tell me on deck, yes, I DO know the story of the flag and anthem thing y'all are very proud about.... After about 40 minutes we passed under the Francis Scott Key Bridge with a couple of meters clearance, a good photo opportunity. Fortunately, it was quite mild for December and the sun even tried its best to see us off after a murky day in Maryland.

 

Squeezing under the bridge

CruiseDec11dump057.jpg

 

 

As usual on the first day, there was a 7-45 show for all guests, where we met Mitch Merucci the Cruise Director (filling in for the Blairs, who were on vacation). The guest artiste was Tom McTigue, a pretty good comedian, who even had a slightly fresh take on the usual first night cruising jokes about the sanitation system, the size of the showers and the amount of food we will all consume over the next 12 days.

 

 

Cruise Director, Mitch Merucci

CruiseDec11dump160.jpg

 

I made my way to the My Fair Lady dining room on deck 4 for my late seating dinner. I was assigned to a 4-top table, right next to the Captain's Table (which was empty on this first night and would remain so for the whole cruise, which I found surprising for a 12-nighter). I was joined by a nice couple from the Baltimore area, who were originally from Haiti. My regular readers will know this is a pet peeve of mine, but it makes no sense to me to allocate single diners to small tables, and I much prefer a larger group. I had a very good time with my table mates, but naturally they found it hard to talk to each other with me there (it would perhaps seem rude) and there was never an opportunity for me to take a break and listen to the conversation, as you can in a larger group.

 

My cruise dining started as it usually does with Vidella Onion Tart and Prime Rib, both of which were good (the prime rib was one of the better ones I have had on a ship). After dinner, I headed to Boleros (which seems to do double duty as a Latin dance venue and sports bar) to watch the second half of Monday Night football, with my first Strawberry Daiquiri of the trip. Some may feel that's not a sufficiently manly-man drink for football, but, hey, I'm from England and I'm on vacation!! Nodding off late in the 4th quarter, I headed for bed and slept the sleep of the just, or, at least, the sleep of the tired and jet-lagged with a couple of drinks inside them.

Edited by Cotswold Eagle

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This itinerary began with two days at sea, heading towards the Caribbean and warmer weather. On this second day we had reasonably calm seas with a swell of only about 1m, with occasional showers, although it remained mild (mid-60s). I spent my time exploring the ship, taking a book out from the library, setting up my internet account with my C&A coupon and other sea day "activities", but I also had a couple of planned activities.

 

I took part in an art tour and subsequent auction. The art programme on RCI has been taken on by Art Actually, part of the International Corporate Art group, who are responsible for supplying all of the art on board RCCL ships (which is obviously a huge private collection). They aim to be part of the enrichment programme, as well as providing an opportunity to buy art, and are very mindful of the bad reputation of the previous vendor. To that end the assistant art chap (I am afraid I have forgotten his name and title!) conducted a brief tour of some of the art in the public spaces of the ship, which was mildly interesting (I would have more fun exploring the art myself later in the voyage, as I always do). The auctions are in fact sales they do not bid up, as of old, in order to try to avoid some of the criticisms of the previous auctions. This does make them slightly pointless and dull, in my humble opinion but you still get a free glass of champagne. I chatted to the guys a couple of times during the cruise and they told me this program will be rolling out across the whole fleet in the next few months. For those who hate, them I am afraid the auctions are held in the Centrum, by the Champagne bar on Deck 4.

 

Today was also our Meet and Mingle, held in the Spotlight Lounge, and which was hosted by the group co-ordinator and the Cruise Director, who provided a number of raffle prizes (including the usual t-shirts etc., but also an Enchantment inaugural plaque). I overheard Mitch saying to another crew member that, this stuff is important (i.e. the Meet Mingle, not the raffle prize :)). Roll Call members also held a gift exchange, and I received a crab-themed Xmas tree ornament, presumably from a local Maryland resident. If you are reading, thank you, it survived the journey home and looks great on my tree

 

Tonight was the first formal night of our trip and also the Welcome Aboard Reception. For us late diners, the reception was at 7.45 pm, again in the Spotlight Lounge. For dinner tonight I had escargots (x2 ;)), Caesar salad, and fillet of beef, all of which were very good. Unfortunately, I learned that my dining companions, Samuel and Jesuha, had been suffering from sea sickness on this calm day, especially Jeshua, which did not bode well (they were on their first cruise, the poor things).

 

The headliner at this evenings show (at 10.30 pm) was vocalist Tony B, who performed songs from Al Jolson to Tony Bennett via the Rat Pack. I thought he had a great voice and was very informative and entertaining when introducing the songs. A good end to a busy first day at sea, during which I appeared to fail completely to take any photos :o

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Keep it coming. Will be on her 12 night in Feb.

 

I will, but I fear I will not finish my review until next year :D I should, of course, have invited comments and questions as we go along.

 

It's a great itinerary, I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did!

 

David

Edited by Cotswold Eagle

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another day of on-board activities as we sail south. The temperature had climbed into the mid-70s and the pool decks were much more in use. The ride was a little bumpy today though, with swells up to about 4m, so I feared for my dining companions.

 

I managed to fit in a few activities between some crucial high-level naps. After a leisurely breakfast in the Windjammer (pretty crowded all through the cruise we sailed very full), I headed to the centrum for a cooking demonstration by the Austrian Head Chef and the English Activities Manger, Darren (Darren is English, not the activities...). There have been some comments about Mitch and Darren in other threads. I found them both very personable, but inexperienced in their roles (as I mentioned, the Blairs were on vacation, so they were filling the posts on relief). Mitch I think will make a fine CD one day, based on his personality and his hosting of the various shows and games I saw. Darren needs to work on his skills when hosting something like this demonstration; his commentary was a bit stilted. I know that others found activities didnt happen or started at the wrong time, or lacked variety and there were some obvious mistakes in the Cruise Compasses. I know there were dance classes, arts and crafts workshops, Tai-Chi enrichment classes and David Greenstein (who appears as talosian on these boards) was doing a series of destination lectures; we also had the usual slate of bingo, trivia pool games etc., so it seemed a pretty full activites progamme to me. But then I am very happy to keep myself to myself on vacation, and dont use many of the organised activities. Just wanted to get the other experience I heard about out there and maybe some of our Roll Call will be along to comment further. I know my dining table mates were pretty fully occupied, trying to get the full cruise experience!

 

Anyway, back to the cooking demonstration the chef showed us how to make some smoked salmon appetisers/canapés, a scampi dish and (of course) apple strudel. He also had a couple of staff doing cute vegetable carvings.

 

CruiseDec11dump064.jpg

 

CruiseDec11dump069.jpg

 

At 7 pm we had the first production show of the cruise with the RC Singers and Dancers, whom I found to be a pretty good cast. The show was Can't Stop the Rock (in a change of advertised schedule for some reason). I enjoyed the production, which was a compilation of various rock and roll songs with some impressive costume changes.

 

CruiseDec11dump031.jpg

 

CruiseDec11dump079.jpg

 

At 7.45 pm we had the C&A Welcome Back party, again in the Spotlight Lounge, where for the first time I was treated to the phenomenon that is Danny League, the Loyalty and Cruise Sales Manager (he also had an English assistant working in the C&A Study, whose name I dont remember I never got to speak to them in there, they were pretty busy most of the cruise). Danny is from the Philippines and lets just say he is very enthusiastic about his role and has quite a microphone presence! A real character.

 

From the reception I headed straight to dinner a busy evening, thank goodness for those earlier naps! Jeshua was still feeling under the weather and vowing never to cruise again, but didnt seem to mind too much as I tucked into scallop & mussel gratin, bouillabaisse (which was just OK-ish), coq au vin (better than the rubbery version I had on the Grandeur), and chocolate hazelnut tart, which was great!

 

And finally, at 10.15 pm we had the Love & Marriage show back in the main theatre, which was pretty funny. Again, I thought Mitch hosted the main part excellently, but Darrens auditions to select the contestants was less well done. But overall, a good end to a hectic evening (whats that about Im on vacation?!) as we head towards our first port of call tomorrow.

 

Things may not be going well...

CruiseDec11dump089.jpg

 

Everyone's a winner!

CruiseDec11dump094.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We got our first sight of land since Monday as we pulled into Labadee early on Thursday morning. Not early enough, though, as Explorer is already here, moored to the outer berth, so we nose our way onto the inside parking space at about 7.30 am. Explorer towers several decks over her smaller cousin, and some of her passengers opening their balcony curtains are startled to find Enchantment guests enjoying their breakfast across the way. It's a beautiful day in this particular corner of paradise, sunny with some clouds and a light mist on the tops of the hills, with temperatures climbing well into the 80s.

 

As most of you will know, Labadee is RCIs private island its actually a small peninsula on Haiti. I was last here six years ago, I think (I may have been since and not got off the ship). And my first reaction is, Labadee, Labadee, what have they done to you, Labadee?! My memory is of a quiet hideaway in the Caribbean there is a lot more stuff here now. Hard to describe, but I will post some then and now photos in another thread one day. I preferred it the way it was, but nonetheless spent a few happy hours exploring (and eating, naturally). At least having built the dock, its a lot quicker to get ashore than the old tendering days.

 

The zip line was doing good business, the rollercoaster was running, bands were playing and the shopping opportunities were open, as several thousand guests enjoyed their day. The facilities and beaches seemed to cope with two ships quite well, but other than paddling in the sea and sampling some ribs and chicken (all food and drink is brought from the ships), I didnt do much, so cant speak to exactly how well they were coping.

 

Arriving next to Explorer

CruiseDec11dump102.jpg

 

Our lunch goes ashore!

CruiseDec11dump103.jpg

 

Two cousins at rest

CruiseDec11dump109.jpg

 

Adrenaline Beach

CruiseDec11dump115.jpg

 

Columbus Cove

CruiseDec11dump122.jpg

 

We had our second Alpha call of the cruise just as we were about to leave at 4 pm, signifying a medical emergency. I learned later that it was a crew member who had been pretty badly hurt (I am not sure of the circumstances), but we were told later in the cruise that he was recovering well in hospital and was flying home a few days later. The Captain delayed our departure as the situation was assessed, but in the end the casualty was kept on board until our next port of call.

 

The headliner at tonights show was as English female singer, Sonia Selbie. She had a great voice and personality and I thoroughly enjoyed her performance.

 

CruiseDec11dump165.jpg

 

Tonights dinner was the Italian menu. I had scallop risotto (x2 - thanks to Mariano, our waiter from Goa, who had by now got my measure as a trencherman), and the lamb shank, which was good, but not as historic as the one I had on Grandeur earlier in the year. Of course, Italian night means singing waiters, to the bafflement and then amusement of my table mates, who had very much enjoyed spending the day on solid land! Yes, its a little corny, but go with it, its fun.

 

Unfortunately, I missed tonights late comedy show from Tom McTigue - too tired! I did catch a little Thursday Night Football in Boleros, though. As I retired for the night, I remembered to put my clocks forward 1 hour, as they changed to put us on "island time", in anticipation of a busy few days at new ports of call for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought it might be interesting for those who have yet to visit to see more photos of Labadee. Some more views of the Dragon's Breath Flight Line, the Arawak Aqua Park (empty - we only had a handful of children on this 'between the holidays' cruise), the cabanas and an overview taken as we leave, which may help get the layout straight in one's mind.

 

CruiseDec11dump119.jpg

 

CruiseDec11dump108.jpg

 

CruiseDec11dump124.jpg

 

CruiseDec11dump120.jpg

 

CruiseDec11dump135.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was looking forward to my first visit to San Juan, but first we had another morning at sea. It was not a very pleasant day, windy with showers, reminding us that we are still on the Atlantic side of the islands. It was warm, though, with temperatures in the low 80s.

 

Arrival time was 2 pm, and I positioned myself on a blustery deck after an early lunch as we headed into this historic and famous port. As we navigated the narrow channel guarded by the Castillo San Felipe del Morro (from now on, just El Morro!) the US Coast Guard sent out two boats to escort us in, who had some fun showing off their boat handling skills. As we pulled in to the dock, which is right in downtown Old San Juan, we found the MSC Poesa already in port and 2 ambulances waiting on dock for us.

 

El Morro guards a stormy shore

CruiseDec11dump131.jpg

 

USCG having fun....

CruiseDec11dump186.jpg

 

I had no great plans for the afternoon, but wanted to get up to the great fort we had seen. By luck I was able to immediately jump on the free trolley, which does a circular route round the town - there is a stop opposite the large CVS store near the dock (turn left on the street as you leave the dock area). This took me up to El Morro, which otherwise would be quite an uphill hike. Despite the windy conditions and occasional heavy showers, I had great fun for a couple of hours exploring this massive fortification, started in the 16th, and mostly finished in the 18th, century, which protected this key strategic island for the Spanish. I learned about the history of the fortifications all over this part of the island and the battles that have been fought here. Well worth the $3 admission. I jumped back on the trolley for the trip back to town and spent some time wandering the narrow streets and squares, which give it a European feel, before heading back on board as darkness fell, vowing to come back and spend more time in this city one day.

 

The trolley

CruiseDec11dump256.jpg

 

The approach to El Morro (the trolley will take you all the way)

CruiseDec11dump203.jpg

 

Inside the fortifications

CruiseDec11dump249.jpg

 

Old San Juan evening

CruiseDec11dump266.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Happy New Year, David!

 

Great review-it's fun reliving the wonderful cruise and I can't wait for the next installment. What kind of camera do you have?

 

Thanks for the nice note :)

 

Happy Sails to You

 

OOOEEE :D:D Bob and Phyl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Happy New Year, David!

 

Great review-it's fun reliving the wonderful cruise and I can't wait for the next installment. What kind of camera do you have?

 

Thanks for the nice note :)

 

Happy Sails to You

 

OOOEEE :D:D Bob and Phyl

 

Hi, Bob! Happy New Year to you and all other shipmates, too. You will be featuring in a later installment, of course - NAKED :D

 

This was my first major trip with my new Panasonic DMC-TZ20 compact digital camera (with 16x zoom), which I am still getting to grips with, but I am very pleased with the results overall.

 

Best wishes for 2012 and I hope we sail together again one day.

 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great review and pictures, David - thanks so much for sharing them! It was wonderful reliving the cruise through your eyes :)

 

All the best!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We were in port until 10 pm and some of my shipmates stayed ashore to have dinner and sample the evening life of San Juan. I headed to the dining room for dinner (smoked salmon and tilapia, both good), where we learned some sad news – Mariano, our excellent waiter, with whom I had enjoyed chatting about his homeland Goa, India and who had carried out his duties with charm, humour and skill, told us that his mother had passed away and he was heading home from our next port of call. You may ask if he should have been working in the circumstances – it was his decision, which I respect, and he wanted to see us all and explain his absence for the rest of the cruise.

We left port slightly late, at 10.20 pm. There was an electrical storm in the area, which gave a dramatic backdrop to this out of the ordinary night-time sailaway, although the weather kept most people inside.

An unusual sailway

CruiseDec11dump274.jpg

Old San Juan by night

CruiseDec11dump275.jpg

Floodlit fortifications

CruiseDec11dump281.jpg

Tonight’s show for second sitting dining was at 10.30 pm, so I arrived slightly late (and damp, to be honest) from the outside decks. The headline act was Antonio Salci, a good pianist, who also showcased the Enchantment of the Seas Orchestra well, as they joined him in solos. And so to bed, in anticipation of an early arrival in to St Thomas in the morning.

Antonio Salci...

CruiseDec11dump285.jpg

...and the boys in the band!

CruiseDec11dump288.jpg

The leader of the orchestra (Andre?) gets time in the spotlight

CruiseDec11dump278.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

David, Happy New Year and what a wonderful review you're doing and beautiful pictures. Have to agree with others it's like reliving the cruise all over again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the kind comments, I'm enjoying putting it together! But I have taken a break to watch the Eagles beat the Redskins:D

 

I will hopefully have the review all finished tomorrow.

 

Happy New Year!

 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great job...enjoying reading about this ship. We have been thinking about trying her out of Baltimore...we love the Explorer out of Bayonne.

 

Can't wait to read more. We have have not experienced a ship without a royal promenade.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Great job...enjoying reading about this ship. We have been thinking about trying her out of Baltimore...we love the Explorer out of Bayonne.

 

Can't wait to read more. We have have not experienced a ship without a royal promenade.

 

Thank you. I shall include some thoughts about the ship when we are on our way back from the islands, so to speak :)

 

David

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last nights poor weather must have continued, as the decks are very wet and the sky full of low, threatening clouds as we glide into a beautiful and spectacular harbour at Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas just before 8 am and back onto the dock. We have the island to ourselves; there are no other ships in port, although rumour has it that Bill Gatesyacht is parked next door. There are sea-planes taking off toward the harbour entrance, which come close to the ship (the Captain explained his frustration at this later in the cruise, as they have no contact with air traffic control on their entry).

 

Backing on to the pier Havensight to the right, Yacht Haven Grande ahead, downtown is further round to the left

CruiseDec11dump289.jpg

 

With nothing in particular planned here either, I stayed on board as the early rush headed off to their various excursions. The crew carried out emergency drills during the morning and launched some of the life boats, which was interesting to listen to and watch.

 

CruiseDec11dump302.jpg

 

Later, I ventured off the ship to explore St Thomas for the first time on foot. There is an extensive and reasonably attractive low rise shopping area (Havensight Mall), containing many of the usual sorts of Caribbean port shops, right at the dock, which is very convenient. There was also an information booth right at the entrance as you leave the ship itself. Taxis were waiting to take folk downtown for the further shopping opportunities that apparently await, but I headed round the end of the dock and in to Yacht Haven Grande marina and shopping complex, where many impressive yachts were moored. It was quite difficult to find the way in from the pier (despite a huge sign), I actually entered from the road side. Unfortunately, this somewhat higher end shopping area was mostly closed in this off-season. There is a boardwalk through Yacht Haven Grande, which takes one in the direction of downtown, although the path does join the road later.

 

The information booth very convenient

CruiseDec11dump325.jpg

 

Havensight Mall

CruiseDec11dump322.jpg

 

The entrance to Yacht Haven Grande - hard to miss, you'd thiink...

CruiseDec11dump304.jpg

 

Yacht Haven Grande, looking towards downtown

CruiseDec11dump294.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing I had heard about here in St Thomas was the cable car, the Skyride to Paradise Point. It was visible as we pulled in, but the top station was almost in cloud. As the weather cleared a little late in the morning (it remained warm and humid all day, with occasional showers), I decided to explore. It is easy to walk to the base station from the ship - exit Havensight and follow the (quite busy) road to the left and you are there in a few minutes stroll (just past Hooters, I happened to notice!)

 

I had assumed that it would be a continuously running service (as one would find in ski resorts) but actually they operate as an aerial 'tram', with three cars ascending and descending together on a schedule - every half-hour when we were in town. I bought a ticket that included a drink at the top (for about $27, I think) and took the ride. The cars are exactly like those in ski resorts, i.e. there are no seats, although you can rest against the window ledge (not the door, I would suggest).

 

Base station

CruiseDec11dump321.jpg

 

Aerial tram

CruiseDec11dump272.jpg

 

You are rewarded with spectacular views of the harbour. And, of course, the opportunity to buy refreshments, souvenirs and (in-season, not today) ride on a small ferris wheel and other touristy things. There is a nature trail, which I didn't follow and you can climb a little above the upper station for better views. I had a bite to eat, to go with my Bailey's Bushwhacker cocktail (pretty strong), before heading back to earth to do some shopping and return to the ship for our 4pm sailaway.

 

Views from the top

CruiseDec11dump307.jpg

CruiseDec11dump311.jpg

CruiseDec11dump315.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello David

 

Nice job on the review, I always think I am going to get time to do one and then never get it done.

 

Happy New Year

 

Keep up the good work and we will talk soon.

 

Brian J

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We pulled out of port at about 5 pm (I made an error in the previous entry - all aboard was 4.30 pm), under a grey and leaden sky, with sea-planes still buzzing round the harbour. The sun did its best to break through, providing a nice photo op, though.

 

Sailaway

CruiseDec11dump328.jpg

 

A seaplane takes off in front of us

CruiseDec11dump330.jpg

 

The sun starts to dip towards the horizon

CruiseDec11dump334.jpg

 

Tonight's headliner, at 7 pm for late diners, was Joey Van, a vocalist and comedian who does singing impressions. Now, he had been on my last cruise, and I was not very complimentary about him, but I was more impressed this time round. His Tom Jones is still not very good, though! And his cream jacket and, er, silver hair played havoc with my camera exposure....

 

Joey Van

CruiseDec11dump175.jpg

 

Arrangements had to be changed in the MDR with Mariano's departure. In fact, his place was taken by the restaurant manager for the section, Kirat, also from India. He had not lost his waiting skills, and brought everything (and more) that I wanted, but inevitably service suffered a little as he was still managing the rest of his area, as well as serving us and Mariano's other tables. He did it all with good humour and grace, though. Tonight he tempted me to a tasty baby shrimp cocktail and roast chicken. I ordered what I thought the menu described as poached pears, but in fact turned out to be poached peaches - they were very good, either way!

 

There was a late night buffet on deck tonight, which I skipped, but I did spend a little time watching other islands drift by under the moon and speculating on what ship it was keeping station on our port quarter. A crowded place, the Virgin Islands, compared to our transit down through the empty Atlantic. Tomorrow we visit St. Maarten, where I have plans I am very much looking forward to.

Edited by Cotswold Eagle

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thanks for the kind comments, I'm enjoying putting it together! But I have taken a break to watch the Eagles beat the Redskins:D

 

I will hopefully have the review all finished tomorrow.

 

Happy New Year!

 

David

 

 

LOL! I'm a Baltimore Ravens fan living in Virginia so for the past 10 years, I've had to suffer on Sunday afternoons watching the Red(dead)skins! We rarely get a televised Ravens game so to know they are in the playoffs is great! BTW: you really did not need to watch the entire Eagles/Redskins game to know the outcome...hope you enjoyed watching!!:)

 

Now for important stuff: I'm enjoying your review and pictures!! Beautiful... I wanted to do a 12niter out of Baltimore to the southern carib. but could not get anyone to go with me--scheduled for March 2012. Your review will be the cruise I did not get to take--show me everything you can! thank you and enjoy the playoffs/Super Bowl 2012.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • Celebrity Edge in Europe Sweepstakes
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...